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Andal vs. Macaraig G.R. No. L-2474 May 30, 1951 Ponente: J.


ISSUE: WON the child be considered as the legitimate son of Emiliano HELD: Since the boy was born on June 17,

were still living under the marital roof. Even if Felix, the brother, was living in the same house, and he and the wife were indulging in illicit intercourse since May, 1942, that does not preclude cohabitation between Emiliano and his wife. We admit that Emiliano was already suffering from tuberculosis and his condition then was so serious that he could hardly move and get up from bed, his feet were swollen and his voice hoarse. But experience shows that this does not prevent carnal intercourse. MARISSA BENITEZ-BADUA vs. CA, Benitez Lirio and Benitez Aguilar G.R. No. 105625 January 24, 1994 Ponente: J PUNO

FACTS: Emiliano Andal became sick of tuberculosis in January 1941. Sometime thereafter, his brother, Felix, went to live in his house to help him work his house to help him work his farm. His sickness became worse that on or about September 10, 1942, he became so weak that he could hardly move and get up from his bed. On September 10, 1942, Maria Duenas, his wife, eloped with Felix, and both went to live in the house of Maria's father, until the middle of 1943. Since May, 1942, Felix and Maria had sexual intercourse and treated each other as husband and wife. On January 1, 1943, Emiliano died without the presence of his wife, who did not even attend his funeral. On June 17, 1943, Maria Dueas gave birth to a boy, who was given the name of Mariano Andal.

1943, and Emiliano Andal died on January 1, 1943, that boy is presumed to be the legitimate son of Emiliano and his wife, he having been born within three hundred (300) days following the dissolution of the marriage. This presumption can only be rebutted by proof that it was physically impossible for the husband to have had access to his wife during the first 120 days of the 300 next preceding the birth of the child. There was no evidence presented that Emiliano Andal was absent during the initial period of conception, specially during the period comprised between August 21, 1942 and September 10, 1942, which is included in the 120 days of the 300 next preceding the birth of the child Mariano Andal. On the contrary, there is enough evidence to show that during that initial period, Emiliano Andal and his wife

FACTS: Spouses Vicente Benitez and Isabel Chipongian owned various properties especially in Laguna. Isabel died on April 25, 1982. Vicente followed

her in the grave on November 13, 1989. He died intestate. The fight for administration of Vicente's estate ensued. On September 24, 1990, private respondents Victoria Benitez-Lirio and Feodor Benitez Aguilar (Vicente's sister and nephew, respectively) instituted Sp. Proc. No. 797 (90) before the RTC of San Pablo City, 4th Judicial Region, Br. 30. They prayed for the issuance of letters of administration of Vicente's estate in favor of private respondent Aguilar. On November 2, 1990, petitioner opposed the petition. She alleged that she is the sole heir of the deceased Vicente Benitez and capable of administering his estate. The parties further exchanged reply and rejoinder to buttress their legal postures. The trial court then received evidence on the issue of petitioner's heirship to the estate of the deceased. Petitioner tried to prove that she is the only legitimate child of the spouses Vicente Benitez and Isabel

Chipongian. She submitted documentary evidence She also testified that the said spouses reared an continuously treated her as their legitimate daughter. On the other hand, private respondents tried to prove, mostly thru testimonial evidence, that the said spouses failed to beget a child during their marriage; that the late Isabel, then thirty six (36) years of age, was even referred to Dr. Constantino Manahan, a noted obstetrician-gynecologist, for treatment. Their primary witness, Victoria Benitez-Lirio, elder sister of the late Vicente, then 77 years of age, 2 categorically declared that petitioner was not the biological child of the said spouses who were unable to physically procreate. ISSUE: WON the petitioner is the sole heir of the deceased HELD: The appellate court did not err when it refused to apply these articles to

the case at bench. For the case at bench is not one where the heirs of the late Vicente are contending that petitioner is not his child by Isabel. Rather, their clear submission is that petitioner was not born to Vicente and Isabel. Concepcion vs. CA G.R. No. 123450. August 31, 2005 Ponente: J. Corona FACTS: This is the story of petitioner Gerardo B. Concepcion and private respondent Ma. Theresa Almonte, and a child named Jose Gerardo. Gerardo and Ma. Theresa were married and they lived with Ma. Theresas parents. Almost a year later, Ma. Theresa gave birth to Jose Gerardo. Gerardo and Ma. Theresas relationship turned out to be short-lived, however. Gerardo filed a petition to have his marriage to Ma. Theresa annulled on the ground of bigamy. He alleged that

nine years before he married Ma. Theresa she had married one Mario Gopiao, which marriage was never annulled. Gerardo also found out that Mario was still alive and was residing in Loyola Heights, Quezon City. Ma. Theresa did not deny marrying Mario when she was twenty years old. She, however, averred that the marriage was a sham and that she never lived with Mario at all. The trial court ruled that Ma. Theresas marriage to Mario was valid and subsisting when she married Gerardo and annulled her marriage to the latter for being bigamous. It declared Jose Gerardo to be an illegitimate child as a result. The custody of the child was awarded to Ma. Theresa while Gerardo was granted visitation rights. Ma. Theresa felt betrayed and humiliated when Gerardo had their marriage annulled. She held him responsible for the bastardization of Gerardo. She moved for the reconsideration of the

above decision INSOFAR ONLY as that portion of the decision which grant(ed) to the petitioner so-called visitation rights between the hours of 8 in the morning to 12:00 p.m. of any Sunday.[10] She argued that there was nothing in the law granting visitation rights in favor of the putative father of an illegitimate child. She further maintained that Jose Gerardos surname should be changed from Concepcion to Almonte, her maiden name, following the rule that an illegitimate child shall use the mothers surname. ISSUE: Whether or not Gerardo is a legitimate child. HELD: The status and filiation of a child cannot be compromised. Article 164 of the Family Code is clear. A child who is conceived or born during the marriage of his parents is legitimate.

As a guaranty in favor of the child and to protect his status of legitimacy, Article 167 of the Family Code provides: Article 167. The child shall be considered legitimate although the mother may have declared against its legitimacy or may have been sentenced as an adulteress. The law requires that every reasonable presumption be made in favor of legitimacy. We explained the rationale of this rule in the recent case of Cabatania v.

Court of Appeals:
The presumption of legitimacy does not only flow out of a declaration in the statute but is based on the broad principles of natural justice and the supposed virtue of the mother. It is grounded on the policy to protect the innocent offspring from the odium of illegitimacy. Liyao vs. Liyao G.R. No. 138961. March 7, 2002

Ponente: DE LEON, JR. FACTS: Before us is a petition for review on certiorari assailing the decision dated June 4, 1999 of the Court of Appeals in CA-G.R. C.V. No. 45394[1] which reversed the decision of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Pasig, Metro Manila, Branch 167 in declaring William Liyao, Jr. as the illegitimate (spurious) son of the deceased William Liyao and ordering Juanita Tanhoti-Liyao, Pearl Margaret L. Tan, Tita Rose L. Tan and Linda Christina Liyao to recognize and acknowledge William Liyao, Jr. as a compulsory heir of the deceased William Liyao and entitled to all successional rights as such and to pay the costs of the suit. On November 29,1976, William Liyao, Jr., represented by his mother Corazon G. Garcia, filed Civil Case No. 24943 before the RTC of Pasig, Branch 167 which is an action for compulsory recognition as the illegitimate (spurious) child of the late William Liyao against herein respondents,

Juanita Tanhoti-Liyao, Pearl Margaret L. Tan, Tita Rose L. Tan and Linda Christina Liyao.[2]The complaint was later amended to include the allegation that petitioner was






odium of illegitimacy.[23] The presumption of legitimacy of the child, however, is not conclusive and consequently, may be overthrown by evidence to the contrary. Hence, Article 255 of the New Civil Code[24] provides:





enjoyment of the status of the child of said William Liyao, petitioner having
been recognized and acknowledged as

such child by the decedent during his lifetime."

ISSUE: May petitioner impugn his own legitimacy to be able to claim from the estate of his supposed father, William Liyao? HELD: We deny the present petition. Under the New Civil Code, a child born and conceived is during a to valid be of marriage presumed

Article 255. Children born after one hundred and eighty days following the celebration of the marriage, and before three hundred days following its dissolution or the separation of the spouses shall be presumed to be legitimate. Against this presumption no evidence shall be admitted other than that of the physical impossibility of the husband having access to his wife within the first one hundred and twenty days of the three hundred which preceded the birth of the child. This physical impossibility may be caused: 1) By the impotence of the husband;

legitimate.[22] The


legitimacy of children does not only flow out from a declaration contained in the statute but of is based on justice the broad the principles natural and

supposed virtue of the mother. The presumption is grounded in a policy to

2) By the fact that husband and wife were living separately in such a way that access was not possible; 3) By the serious illness of the husband.
Petitioner insists that his mother, Corazon Garcia, had been living separately for ten (10) years from her husband, Ramon Yulo, at the time that she cohabited with the late William Liyao and it was physically impossible for her to have sexual relations with Ramon Yulo when petitioner was conceived and born. To bolster his claim, petitioner presented a document entitled, Contract of Separation,[25] executed and signed by Ramon Yulo indicating a waiver of rights to any and all claims on any property that Corazon Garcia might acquire in the future.[26] The fact that Corazon Garcia had been living separately from her husband, Ramon Yulo, at the time petitioner was conceived and born is of no moment.






heirs - can impugn legitimacy; that would amount o an insult to his memory.[29] It is therefor clear that the present petition initiated by Corazon G. Garcia as guardian ad litem of the then minor, herein petitioner, to compel recognition by respondents of petitioner William Liyao, Jr, as the illegitimate son of the late William Liyao cannot prosper. It is settled that a child born within a valid marriage is presumed legitimate even though the mother may have declared against its legitimacy or may have been sentenced as an adulteress.[30] We cannot allow petitioner to maintain his present petition and subvert the clear mandate of the law that only the husband, or in exceptional circumstances, his heirs, could impugn the legitimacy of a child born in a valid and subsisting marriage. The child himself cannot choose his own filiation. If the husband, presumed to be the father does not impugn the legitimacy of the child, then the status of the child is fixed, and

husband to have sexual intercourse with his wife is one of the grounds for impugning the legitimacy of the child, it bears emphasis that the grounds for impugning the legitimacy of the child mentioned in Article 255 of the Civil Code may only be invoked by the husband, or in proper cases, his heirs under the conditions set forth under Article 262 of the Civil of Code.[27] Impugning the child is a the strictly legitimacy

personal right of the husband, or in exceptional cases, his heirs for the simple reason that he is the one directly confronted with the scandal and ridicule which the infidelity of his wife produces and he should be the one to decide whether to conceal that infidelity or expose it in view of the moral and economic interest involved.[28] It is only in exceptional allowed to cases that his heirs are contest such legitimacy.

Outside of these cases, none - even his

the latter cannot choose to be the child of his mothers alleged paramour. On the other hand, if the presumption of legitimacy is overthrown, the child cannot elect the paternity of the husband who successfully defeated the presumption. Eceta vs Ecete G.R. No. 157037, May 20, 2004 Ponente: Justice Ynares-Santiago

In 1977, Vicente died. During his lifetime, however, he sired Maria Theresa, an illegitimate daughter. Thus at the time of his death, his compulsory heirs were his mother, Rosalina, and illegitimate child, Maria Theresa. In 1991, Maria Theresa filed a case before the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City, Branch 218, for "Partition and Accounting with Damages"2 against Rosalina alleging that by virtue of her fathers death, she became Rosalinas co-heir and co-owner of the Cubao property. The case was docketed as Civil Case No. Q-91-8922. In her answer, Rosalina alleged that the property is paraphernal in nature and thus belonged to her exclusively. During the pre-trial conference, the parties entered into a stipulation of facts wherein they both admitted their relationship to one another, i.e., that Rosalina is Maria Theresas grandmother.

ISSUE: Whether or not the daugther has competent evidence to prove her filiation with the son of the petitioner. HELD: Notably, what was filed and tried before the trial court and the Court of Appeals is one for partition and accounting with damages only. The filiation, or compulsory recognition by Vicente Eceta of Maria Theresa, was never put in issue. In fact, both parties have already agreed and admitted, as duly noted in the trial courts pre-trial order,6 that Maria Theresa is Rosalinas granddaughter. Notwithstanding, Maria Theresa successfully established her filiation with Vicente by presenting a duly authenticated birth certificate.7 Vicente himself signed Maria Theresas birth certificate thereby acknowledging that she is his daughter. By this act alone, Vicente is deemed to have acknowledged his paternity over Maria Theresa

FACTS: Petitioner Rosalina P. Vda. De Eceta was married to Isaac Eceta sometime in 1926. During the subsistence of their marriage, they begot a son, Vicente. The couple acquired several properties, among which is the disputed property located at Stanford, Cubao, Quezon City covered by Transfer Certificate of Title No. 61036. Isaac died in 1967 leaving behind Rosalina and Vicente as his compulsory heirs.

sexual contact in the months of Constantino vs. Mendez G.R. No. 57227 May 14, 1992 Justice Bidin FACTS: Sometime in the month of August, 1974, she met Ivan Mendez at Tony's Restaurant located at Sta. Cruz, Manila, where she worked as a waitress; that the day following their first meeting, Ivan invited Amelita to dine with him at Hotel Enrico where he was billeted; that while dining, Ivan professed his love and courted Amelita; that Amelita asked for time to think about Ivan's proposal; that at about 11:00 o'clock in the evening, Amelita asked Ivan to bring her home to which the latter agreed, that on the pretext of getting something, Ivan brought Amelita inside his hotel room and through a promise of marriage succeeded in having sexual intercourse with the latter; that after the sexual contact, Ivan confessed to Amelita that he is a married man; that they repeated their ISSUE: WON the petitioners child is an illegitimate child of the defendant therefore entitled to support HELD: Amelita Constantino has not proved by clear and convincing evidence September and November, 1974, whenever Ivan is in Manila, as a result of which Amelita got pregnant; that her pleas for help and support fell on deaf ears; that Amelita had no sexual relations with any other man except Ivan who is the father of the child yet to be born at the time of the filing of the complaint; that because of her pregnancy, Amelita was forced to leave her work as a waitress; that Ivan is a prosperous businessman of Davao City with a monthly income of P5,000 to P8,000. As relief, Amelita prayed for the recognition of the unborn child, the payment of actual, moral and exemplary damages, attorney's fees plus costs.

her claim that Ivan Mendez is the father of her son Michael Constantino. Such conclusion based on the evaluation of the evidence on record is controlling on this Court as the same is supported by the evidence on record. Even the trial court initially entertained such posture. It ordered the recognition of Michael as the illegitimate son of Ivan only when acting on the motions for reconsideration, it reconsidered, on October 21, 1976, its earlier decision dated June 21, 1976. Amelita's testimony on cross-examination that she had sexual contact with Ivan in Manila in the first or second week of November, 1974 (TSN, December 8, 1975, p. 108) is inconsistent with her response that she could not remember the date of their last sexual intercourse in November, 1974 (Ibid, p. 106). Sexual contact of Ivan and Amelita in the first or second week of November, 1974 is the crucial point that was not even established on direct examination as she merely testified that she had sexual intercourse with Ivan in

the months of September, October and November, 1974. Michael Constantino is a full-term baby born on August 3, 1975 (Exhibit 6) so that as correctly pointed out by private respondent's counsel, citing medical science (Williams Obstetrics, Tenth Ed., p. 198) to the effect that "the mean duration of actual pregnancy, counting from the day of conception must be close to 267 days", the conception of the child (Michael) must have taken place about 267 days before August 3, 1975 or sometime in the second week of November, 1974. While Amelita testified that she had sexual contact with Ivan in November, 1974, nevertheless said testimony is contradicted by her own evidence (Exh. F), the letter dated February 11, 1975, addressed to Ivan Mendez requesting for a conference, prepared by her own counsel Atty. Roberto Sarenas to whom she must have confided the attendant circumstances of

her pregnancy while still fresh in her memory, informing Ivan that Amelita is four (4) months pregnant so that applying the period of the duration of actual pregnancy, the child was conceived on or about October 11, 1974. Petitioner's assertion that Ivan is her first and only boyfriend (TSN, December 8, 1975, p. 65) is belied by Exhibit 2, her own letter addressed to Mrs. Mendez where she revealed the reason for her attachment to Ivan who possessed certain traits not possessed by her boyfriend. She also confided that she had a quarrel with her boyfriend because of gossips so she left her work. An order for recognition and support may create an unwholesome atmosphere or may be an irritant in the family or lives of the parties so that it must be issued only if paternity or filiation is established by clear and convincing evidence. The burden of proof is on Amelita to establish her affirmative allegations that Ivan is the father of her son. Consequently, in the absence of clear

and convincing evidence establishing paternity or filiation, the complaint must be dismissed. Bernabe vs. Alejo G.R. No. 140500. January 21, 2002 PANGANIBAN, J. FACTS: The late Fiscal Ernesto A. Bernabe allegedly fathered a son with his secretary of twenty-three (23) years, herein plaintiffappellant Carolina Alejo. The son was born on September 18, 1981 and was named Adrian Bernabe. Fiscal Bernabe died on August 13, 1993, while his wife Rosalina died on December 3 of the same year, leaving Ernestina as the sole surviving heir. On May 16, 1994, Carolina, in behalf of Adrian, filed the aforesaid complaint praying that Adrian be declared an acknowledged illegitimate son of Fiscal Bernabe and as such he (Adrian) be given

his share in Fiscal Bernabes estate, which is now being held by Ernestina as the sole surviving heir. ISSUE: Whether or not respondent has a cause of action to file a case against petitioner, the legitimate daughter of the putative partition father, with for recognition after and the accounting

considering that illegitimate children are usually begotten and raised in secrecy and without the legitimate family being aware of their existence. x x x The putative parent should thus be given the opportunity to affirm or deny the childs filiation, and this, he or she cannot do if he or she is already dead. The crucial issue to be resolved therefore is whether Adrians right to an action for recognition, which was granted by Article 285 of the Civil Code, had already vested prior to the enactment of the Family Code. Our answer is affirmative. A vested right is defined as one which is absolute, complete and unconditional, to the exercise of which no obstacle exists, and which is immediate and perfect in itself and not dependent upon a contingency x x x.i[11] Respondent however contends that the filing of an action for recognition is procedural in nature and that as a general rule, no vested right may attach to [or] arise from procedural laws.ii[12]

Applying the foregoing jurisprudence, we hold that Article 285 of the Civil Code is a substantive law, as it gives Adrian the right to file his petition for recognition within four years from attaining majority age. Therefore, the Family Code cannot impair or take Adrians right to file an action for recognition, because that right had already vested prior to its enactment.

putative fathers death in the absence of any written acknowledgment of paternity by the latter; Whether or not the honourable court of appeal erred in ruling that respondents had four years from the attainment of minority to file an action for recognition provided by Civil code. HELD: Under the new law, an action for the recognition of an illegitimate child must be brought within the lifetime of the alleged parent. The Family Code makes no distinction on whether the former was still a minor when the latter died. Thus, the putative parent is given by the new Code a chance to dispute the claim,

Jison vs. CA G.R. No. 124853. February 24, 1998 DAVIDE, JR., J. FACTS: MONINA alleged that FRANCISCO had been married to a certain Lilia Lopez Jison since 1940. At the end of 1945 or the start of 1946, however, FRANCISCO impregnated Esperanza F. Amolar (who was then employed as the nanny of FRANCISCO's daughter, Lourdes). As a result, MONINA was born on 6 August 1946, in Dingle, Iloilo, and since childhood, had enjoyed the continuous,

implied recognition as an illegitimate child of FRANCISCO by his acts and that of his family. MONINA further alleged that FRANCISCO gave her support and spent for her education, such that she obtained a Master's degree, became a certified public accountant (CPA) and eventually, a Central Bank examiner. In view of FRANCISCO's refusal to expressly recognize her, MONINA prayed for a judicial declaration of her illegitimate status and that FRANCISCO support and treat her as such. ISSUE: WON petitioner has competent evidence that she is the illegitimate child of the defendant HELD: It is settled that a certificate of live birth purportedly identifying the putative father is not competent evidence as to the issue of paternity, when there is no showing that the putative father had a hand in the preparation of said

certificates, and the Local Civil Registrar is devoid of authority to record the paternity of an illegitimate child upon the information of a third person.ii[37] Simply put, if the alleged father did not intervene in the birth certificate, e.g., supplying the information himself, the inscription of his name by the mother or doctor or registrar is null and void; the mere certificate by the registrar without the signature of the father is not proof of voluntary acknowledgment on the latters part.ii[38] In like manner, FRANCISCOs lack of participation in the preparation of the baptismal certificates (Exhs. C and D) and school records (Exhs. Z and AA) renders these documents incompetent to prove paternity, the former being competent merely to prove the administration of the sacrament of baptism on the date so specified.ii[39] However, despite the inadmissibility of the school records per se to prove paternity, they may be admitted as part

of MONINAs testimony to corroborate her claim that FRANCISCO spent for her education. Conde vs. Abaya G. R. No. 4275. March 23, 1909 Ponente: Judge Arellano FACTS: Casiano Abaya, unmarried, the son of Romualdo Abaya and Sabina Labadia, died on the 6th of April 1899. Paula Conde, as the mother of the natural children Jose and Teopista Conde, whom she states she had by Casiano Abaya, on the 6th of November, 1905, moved the settlement of the said intestate succession. An administrator having been appointed for the said estate on the 25th of November, 1905, Roman Abaya, a son of the said Romualdo Abaya and Sabina Labadia, the parents of the late Casiano Abaya, came forward and opposed said appointment and claimed it for himself as being the nearest relative of the deceased. This was granted by the court

on the 9th of January, 1906. On the 17th of November, 1906, Roman Abaya moved that, after due process of law, the court declare him to be the sole heir of Casiano Abaya, to the exclusion of all other persons, especially of Paula Conde, and to be therefore entitled to take possession of all the property of said estate, and that it be adjudicated to him; and that on November 22, 1906, the court ordered the publication of notices for the declaration of heirs and distribution of the property of the estate. That on the 28th of November, 1906, Paula Conde, in reply to the foregoing motion of Roman Abaya, filed a petition wherein she stated that she acknowledged the relationship alleged by Roman Abaya, but that she considered that her right was superior to his and moved for a hearing of the matter, and, in consequence of the evidence that she intended to present she prayed that she be declared to have preferential rights to

the property left by Casiano Abaya, and that the same be adjudicated to her together with the corresponding products thereof. ISSUE: Whether or not the mother of a natural child now deceased, but who survived the person who, it is claimed, was his natural father, also deceased, may bring an action for the acknowledgment of the natural filiation in favor of such child in order to appear in his behalf to receive the inheritance from the person who is supposed to be his natural father. HELD: Thus, in order to consider the spirit of the Civil Code nothing is more logical than to establish a comparison between an action to claim the legitimacy, and one to enforce acknowledgment. Art. 118. The action to claim its legitimacy may be brought by the child at any time of its lifetime and shall be transmitted to its heirs, should it die during minority or in a state of insanity. In such cases the heirs shall be allowed a

period of five years in which to institute the action. The action already instituted by the child is transmitted by its death to the heirs, if it has not lapsed before then. Art. 137. The actions for the acknowledgment of natural children can be instituted only during the life of the presumed parents, except in the following cases: 1. If the father or mother died during the minority of the child, in which case the latter may institute the action before the expiration of the first four years of its majority. 2. or If, after the death of the father mother, some instrument, before

unknown, should be discovered in which the child is expressly acknowledged. In this case the action must be instituted within the six months following the discovery of such instrument. On this supposition the first difference that results between one action and the

other consists in that the right of action for legitimacy lasts during the whole lifetime of the child, that is, it can always be brought against the presumed parents or their heirs by the child itself, while the right of action for the acknowledgment of a natural child does not last his whole lifetime, and, as a general rule, it cannot be instituted against the heirs of the presumed parents, inasmuch as it can be exercised only during the life of the presumed parents. With regard to the question at issue, that is, the transmission to the heirs of the presumed parents of the obligation to admit the legitimate filiation, or to recognize the natural filiation, there exists the most radical difference in that the former continues during the life of the child who claims to be legitimate, and he may demand it either directly and primarily from the said presumed parents, or indirectly and secondarily from the

heirs of the latter; while the second does not endure for life; as a general rule, it only lasts during the life of the presumed parents. Hence the other difference, derived as a consequence, that an action for legitimacy is always brought against the heirs of the presumed parents in case of the death of the latter, while the action for acknowledgment is not brought cases against prescribed the by heirs of such 137 parents, with the exception of the two article transcribed above. Marquino vs IAC G.R. No. 72078 June 27, 1994 PUNO, J.

Marquino on January 10, 1971 before the then Court of First Instance of Negros Occidental. Also impleaded as defendants, were Maria Terenal-Marquino, wife of Eutiquio Marquino, and their legitimate children Luz, Ana, and Eva, all surnamed Terenal-Marquino. The records show that Bibiana was born on December 2, 1926 at Piapi, Dumaguete City, of Gregoria Romano and allegedly of Eutiquio Marquino. 1 At that time, Eutiquio was still single. Bibiana became personally known to the Marquino family when she was hired as domestic helper in their household at Luke Wright Street, Dumaguete City. She always received financial assistance from them. Thus, she claimed that she enjoyed continuous possession of the status of an acknowledged natural child by direct and unequivocal acts of her father and his family. The Marquinos, on the other hand, strongly denied her allegations.

FACTS: Respondent Bibiana RomanoPagadora filed Civil Case No. 5197, an action for Judicial Declaration of Filiation, Annulment of Partition, Support, and Damages against petitioner Eutiquio

During the pendency of the case and before respondent Bibiana could finish presenting her evidence, she died on March 17, 1979. On March 23, 1979, her heirs were ordered substituted for her as parties-plaintiffs. On May 17, 1983, petitioners filed a Motion to Dismiss. They averred that the action for recognition is intransmissible to the heirs being a personal act. 2 The trial court dismissed the case. ISSUE: (1) the effect of the death of the natural child during the pendency of her action for recognition; and (2) the effect of the death of the putative parent also during the pendency of the case. HELD: First issue: In this case, the action must be commenced within four years from discovery of the document. The rationale for the rule is to give the alleged parents opportunity to be heard. The reason for the exceptions is to protect the heirs.

In Conde vs. Abaya, 6 we held that the right of action for the acknowledgment of natural children to which Article 285 (Article 137, Old Civil code) refers, can never be transmitted. The reason is that the code makes no mention of it in any case, not even as an exception.

the putative parent is an overwhelming consideration because of the unsettling effects of such an action on the peace and harmonious relationship in the family of the putative parent. For this reason, Article 285 provides only two (2) exceptions when an action for recognition transcends the death of the putative parent. Neither of these exceptions obtains in the case at bench. Firstly, the death of Eutiquio did not occur during the minority of Bibiana. In fact, she was already forty-five (45) years old when the recognition case was filed on January 10, 1971. Secondly, no document was discovered, before unknown, in which Bibiana was expressly acknowledged as a natural child. Consequently, the respondent court erred in ruling that the action can still be continued against the heirs of Eutiquio. Under Article 173 of the Family Code, pursuant to this provision, the child can bring the action during his or her entire

In the case at bench, it is evident that Bibiana was a natural child. She was born out of wedlock on December 2, 1926, of Gregoria Romano and allegedly of Eutiquio Marquino who at that time was single. Bibiana sued for compulsory recognition while Eutiquio was still alive. Sadly, she died on March 17, 1983 before she could present her proof of recognition. Her death tolled the action considering its personal nature and intransmissibility. Second issue: We rule against its continuance. In an action for compulsory recognition, the party in the best position to oppose the same is the putative parent himself. 10 The need to hear the side of

lifetime (not during the lifetime of the parents) and even after the death of the parents. In other words, the action does not prescribe as long as he lives. 13 Be that as it may, Article 173 of the Family Code cannot be given retroactive effect so as to apply to the case at bench because it will prejudice the vested rights of petitioners transmitted to them at the time of the death of their father, Eutiquio Marquino. "Vested right" is a right in property which has become fixed and established and is no longer open to doubt or controversy. 14 It expresses the concept of present fixed interest, which in right reason and natural justice should be protected against arbitrary State action. Abadilla vs Tabiliran A.M. No. MTJ-92-716 October 25, 1995 Per Curiam

FACTS: In her verified complaint, complainant Abadilla, in respect to the charge of gross immorality on the part of the respondent, contends that respondent had scandalously and publicly cohabited with a certain Priscilla Q. Baybayan during the existence of his legitimate marriage with Teresita Banzuela. Adding ignominy to an ignominious situation, respondent allegedly shamefacedly contracted marriage with the said Priscilla Baybayan on May 23, 1986. Complainant claims that this was a bigamous union because of the fact that the respondent was then still very much married to Teresita Banzuela. Furthermore, respondent falsely represented himself as "single" in the marriage contract (Exh. "A") and dispensed with the requirements of a marriage contract by invoking cohabitation with Baybayan for five years.

Of persuasive effect on the charge of immorality is the fact that, earlier, respondent's wife filed a complaint in the case entitled, Teresita B. Tabiliran vs. Atty. Jose C. Tabiliran, Jr., 115 SCRA 451. Respondent stood charged therein for abandoning the family home and living with a certain Leonora Pillarion with whom he had a son. In respect of the charge of deceitful conduct, complainant claims that respondent caused to be registered as "legitimate", his three illegitimate children with Priscilla Baybayan. ISSUE: Whether or not the children are legitimate or not

HELD: As a lawyer and a judge, respondent ought to know that, despite his subsequent marriage to Priscilla, these three children cannot be legitimated nor in any way be considered legitimate since

at the time they were born, there was an existing valid marriage between respondent and his first wife, Teresita B. Tabiliran. The applicable legal provision in the case at bar is Article 269 of the Civil Code of the Philippines (R.A. 386 as amended) which provides: Art. 269. Only natural children can be legitimated. Children born outside of wedlock of parents who, at the time of the conception of the former, were not disqualified by any impediment to marry each other, are natural. Legitimation is limited to natural children and cannot include those born of adulterous relations (Ramirez vs. Gmur, 42 Phil. 855). The Family Code: (Executive Order, No. 209), which took effect on August 3, 1988, reiterated the abovementioned provision thus:

Art. 177. Only children conceived and born outside of wedlock of parents who, at the time of the conception of the former, were not disqualified by any impediment to marry each other may be legitimated. Teotico v. Del Val G.R. No. L-18753 1965 BAUTISTA ANGELO, J. FACTS: Maria Mortera y Balsalobre Vda. de Aguirre died on July 14, 1955 in the City of Manila leaving properties worth P600,000.00. She left a will written in Spanish which she executed at her residence at No. 2 Legarda St., Quiapo, Manila. She affixed her signature at the bottom of the will and on the left margin of each and every page thereof in the presence of Pilar Borja, Pilar C. Sanchez, and Modesto Formilleza, who in turn March 26,

affixed their signatures below the attestation clause and on the left margin of each and every page of the will in the presence of the testatrix and of each other. Said will was acknowledged before Notary Public Niceforo S. Agaton by the testatrix and her witnesses. In said will the testatrix made the following preliminary statement: that she was possessed of the full use of her mental faculties; that she was free from illegal pressure or influence of any kind from the beneficiaries of the will and from any influence of fear or threat; that she freely and spontaneously executed said will and that she had neither ascendants nor descendants of any kind such that she could freely dispose of all her estate. Among the many legacies and devises made in the will was one of P20,000.00 to Rene A. Teotico, married to the testatrix's niece named Josefina Mortera. To said spouses the testatrix left the usufruct of

her interest in the Calvo building, while the naked ownership thereof she left in equal parts to her grandchildren who are the legitimate children of said spouses. The testatrix also instituted Josefina Mortera as her sole and universal heir to all the remainder of her properties not otherwise disposed of in the will. On July 17, 1955, Vicente B. Teotico filed a petition for the probate of the will before the Court of First Instance of Manila which was set for hearing on September 3, 1955 after the requisite publication and service to all parties concerned. Ana del Val Chan, claiming to be an adopted child of Francisca Mortera, a deceased sister of the testatrix, as well as an acknowledged natural child of Jose Mortera, a deceased brother of the same testatrix, filed on September 2, 1955 an opposition to the probate of the will alleging the following grounds: (1) said

will was not executed as required by law; (2) the testatrix was physically and mentally incapable to execute the will at the time of its execution; and (3) the will was executed under duress, threat or influence of fear. Vicente B. Teotico, filed a motion to dismiss the opposition alleging that the oppositor had no legal personality to intervene. The probate court, after due hearing, allowed the oppositor to intervene as an adopted child of Francisca Mortera, and on June 17, 1959, the oppositor amended her opposition by alleging, the additional ground that the will is inoperative as to the share of Dr. Rene Teotico because the latter was the physician who took care of the testatrix during her last illness. ISSUE: Has oppositor any interest in any of the provisions of the will, and, in the negative, would she acquire any right to

the estate in the event that the will is denied probate? HELD: Under the terms of the will, oppositor has no right to intervene because she has no interest in the estate either as heir, executor, or administrator, nor does she have any claim to any property affected by the will, because it nowhere appears therein any provision designating her as heir, legatee or devisee of any portion of the estate. She has also no interest in the will either as administratrix or executrix. Neither has she any claim against any portion of the estate because she is not a co-owner thereof, and while she previously had an interest in the Calvo building located in Escolta, she had already disposed of it long before the execution of the will. Under the terms of the will, oppositor has no right to intervene because she has no interest in the estate either as heir, executor, or administrator, nor does she

have any claim to any property affected by the will, because it nowhere appears therein any provision designating her as heir, legatee or devisee of any portion of the estate. She has also no interest in the will either as administratrix or executrix. Neither has she any claim against any portion of the estate because she is not a co-owner thereof, and while she previously had an interest in the Calvo building located in Escolta, she had already disposed of it long before the execution of the will.

married Primo Lim (Lim). They were childless. Minor children, whose parents were unknown, were entrusted to them by a certain Lucia Ayuban (Ayuban). Being so eager to have a child of their own, petitioner and Lim registered the children to make it appear that they were the childrens parents. The children were named Michelle P. Lim (Michelle) and Michael Jude P. Lim (Michael). Michelle was barely eleven days old when brought to the clinic of petitioner. She was born on 15 March 1977. Michael was 11 days old when Ayuban brought him to petitioners clinic. His date of birth is 1 August 1983.ii[4] The spouses reared and cared for the children as if they were their own. They sent the children to exclusive schools. They used the surname Lim in all their school records and documents. Unfortunately, on 28 November 1998, Lim died. On 27 December 2000, petitioner

married Angel Olario (Olario), an American citizen. Thereafter, petitioner decided to adopt the children by availing of the amnesty given under Republic Act No. 8552ii (RA 8552) to those individuals who simulated the birth of a child. Thus, on 24 April 2002, petitioner filed separate petitions for the adoption of Michelle and Michael before the trial court docketed as SPL PROC. Case Nos. 1258 and 1259, respectively. At the time of the filing of the petitions for adoption, Michelle was 25 years old and already married, while Michael was 18 years and seven months old. Michelle and her husband gave their consent to the adoption as evidenced by their Affidavits of Consent. Michael also gave his consent to his adoption as shown in his Affidavit of Consent. Petitioners husband Olario likewise

IN RE: PETITION FOR ADOPTION OF MICHELLE P. LIM, ETC. G.R. Nos. 168992-93 Ponente: Justice Carpio FACTS: Petitioner Monina Lim is an optometrist by profession. On 23 June 1974, she 21 May 2009

executed an Affidavit of Consent for the adoption of Michelle and Michael. In the Certification issued by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Michelle was considered as an abandoned child and the whereabouts of her natural parents were unknown. The DSWD issued a similar Certification for Michael. ISSUE: WON the petitioner, who has remarried can solely adopt.

petitions for adoption. Dura lex sed lex. The law is explicit. The use of the word shall in Section 7, Article III of RA 8552 means that joint adoption by the husband and the wife is mandatory. This is in consonance with the concept of joint parental authority over the child, which is the ideal situation. As the child to be adopted is elevated to the level of a legitimate child, it is but natural to require the spouses to adopt jointly. Neither does petitioner fall under any

The fact that Olario gave his consent to the adoption as shown in his Affidavit of Consent does not suffice. There are certain requirements that Olario must comply being an American citizen. He must meet the qualifications set forth in Section 7 of RA 8552 such as: (1) he must prove that his country has diplomatic relations with the Republic of the Philippines; (2) he must have been living in the Philippines for at least three continuous years prior to the filing of the application for adoption; (3) he must maintain such residency until the adoption decree is entered; (4) he has legal capacity to adopt in his own country; and (5) the adoptee is allowed to enter the adopters country as the latters adopted child. None of these qualifications were shown and proved during the trial. These requirements on residency and certification of the aliens qualification

HELD: It is undisputed that, at the time the petitions for adoption were filed, petitioner had already remarried. She filed the petitions by herself, without being joined by her husband Olario. We have no other recourse but to affirm the trial courts decision denying the

of the three exceptions enumerated in Section 7. First, the children to be adopted are not the legitimate children of petitioner or of her husband Olario. Second, the children are not the illegitimate children of petitioner. And third, petitioner and Olario are not legally separated from each other.

to adopt cannot likewise be waived pursuant to Section 7. The children or adoptees are not relatives within the fourth degree of consanguinity or affinity of petitioner or of Olario. Neither are the adoptees the legitimate children of petitioner. Parental authority includes caring for and rearing the children for civic consciousness and efficiency and the development of their moral, mental and physical character and well-being. The father and the mother shall jointly exercise parental authority over the persons of their common children. Even the remarriage of the surviving parent shall not affect the parental authority over the children, unless the court appoints another person to be the guardian of the person or property of the children. It is true that when the child reaches the age of emancipation that is, when

he attains the age of majority or 18 years of age, emancipation terminates parental authority over the person and property of the child, who shall then be qualified and responsible for all acts of civil life. However, parental authority is merely just one of the effects of legal adoption. Article V of RA 8552 enumerates the effects of adoption.

The court a quo, finding the petition to be sufficient in form and substance, issued an order dated February 15, 1988 setting the petition for hearing on March 28, 1988.

The order was duly published,

with copies thereof seasonably served on the Solicitor General; Assistant Provincial Fiscal Mediavillo, Jr. of Albay; Salvador Condat, father of the child; and the social worker assigned to the court. A copy of said order was posted on the bulletin board of the court and in the other places it had required for that purpose. Nobody appeared to oppose the petition. Compliance with the jurisdictional requirements having been proved at the hearing, the testimonies of herein private respondent, together with that of her husband, Dioscoro Bobiles, and one Ma. Luz Salameno of the Department of Social Welfare and Development were taken and admitted in the proceedings.

Republic vs. CA and Bobiles G.R. No. 92326 January 24, 1992 REGALADO, J.

FACTS: On February 2, 1988, Zenaida Corteza Bobiles filed a petition to adopt Jason Condat, then six (6) years old and who had been living with her family since he was four (4) months old, before the Regional Trial Court of Legaspi City, docketed therein as Special Proceeding No. 1386.

On March 20, 1988, the trial court rendered judgment disposing as follows: ACCORDINGLY, it is declared that henceforth, the minor child, JASON CONDAT, be freed from all legal obligations of obedience and maintenance with respect to his natural parents, and be, to all intents and purposes, the child of the spouses Dioscoro and Zenaida Bobiles, and the surname of the child be changed to "Bobiles" which is the surname of the petitioner. Furnish the Office of the Solicitor General, Manila, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, Regional Office, Region V, Legaspi City, and the Local

Civil Registrar of Tiwi, Albay, with copies of this decision. Herein petitioner appealed to the Court of Appeals which, as earlier stated, affirmed the aforesaid decision of the court below. Hence, this present petition with the following assignment of errors: 1. The Honorable Court of Appeals erred in ruling that the Family Code cannot be applied retroactively to the petition for adoption filed by Zenaida C. Bobiles; and 2 The Honorable Court of Appeals erred in affirming the trial court's decision which granted the petition to adopt Jason Condat in favor of spouses Dioscoro Bobiles and Zenaida C. Bobiles.
7 6

The petition for adoption was filed by private respondent Zenaida C. Bobiles on February 2, 1988, when the law applicable was Presidential Decree No. 603, the Child and Youth Welfare Code. Under said code, a petition for adoption may be filed by either of the spouses or by both of them. However, after the trial court rendered its decision and while the case was pending on appeal in the Court of Appeals, Executive Order No. 209, the Family Code, took effect on August 3, 1988. Under the said new law, joint adoption by husband and wife is mandatory. On the foregoing consideration, petitioner contends that the petition for adoption should be dismissed outright for it was filed solely by private respondent without joining her husband, in violation of Article 185 of the Family Code which requires joint adoption by the spouses. It argues that the Family Code must be applied

retroactively to the petition filed by Mrs. Bobiles, as the latter did not acquire a vested right to adopt Jason Condat by the mere filing of her petition for adoption. We are not persuaded. ISSUE:

procedural statutes are generally retroactive in that they apply to pending proceedings and are not confined to those begun after their enactment although, with respect to such pending proceedings, they affect only procedural steps taken after their enactment.

effect at the time. As long as the petition for adoption was sufficient in form and substance in accordance with the law in governance at the time it was filed, the court acquires jurisdiction and retains it until it fully disposes of the case.


repeat, the jurisdiction of the court is determined by the statute in force at the time of the commencement of the action. Such jurisdiction of a court, whether in criminal or civil cases, once it attaches cannot be ousted by subsequent happenings or events, although of a character which would have prevented jurisdiction from attaching in the first instance.

HELD: The first error assigned by petitioner warrants a review of applicable local and foreign jurisprudence. For that purpose, we start with the premise that Article 185 of the Family Code is remedial in nature. Procedural statutes are ordinarily accorded a retrospective construction in the sense that they may be applied to pending actions and proceedings, as well as to future actions. However, they will not be so applied as to defeat procedural steps completed before their enactment.

The rule that a statutory change in matters of procedure will affect pending actions and proceedings, unless the language of the act excludes them from its operation, is not so extensive that it may be used to validate or invalidate proceedings taken before it goes into effect, since procedure must be governed by the law regulating it at the time the question of procedure arises. 15 The jurisdictional, as distinguished from the purely procedural, aspect of a case is substantive in nature and is subject to a more stringent rule. A petition cannot be dismissed by reason of failure to comply with a law which was not yet in force and

On the second issue, petitioner argues that, even assuming that the Family Code should not apply retroactively, the Court of Appeals should have modified the trial court's decision by granting the adoption in favor of private respondent Zenaida C. Bobiles only, her husband not being a

Procedural matters are governed by the law in force when they arise, and

petitioner. We do not consider this as a tenable position and, accordingly, reject the same. Although Dioscoro Bobiles was not named as one of the petitioners in the petition for adoption filed by his wife, his affidavit of consent, attached to the petition as Annex "B" and expressly made an integral part thereof, shows that he himself actually joined his wife in adopting the child. The pertinent parts of his written consent read as follows: xxx xxx xxx 2. That my wife, ZENAIDA O. CORTEZA BOBILES and I

3. That we are filing the corresponding Petition for Adoption of said minor child, JASON CONDAT, before the Juvenile and Domestic Relations court, now the Regional Trial Court in Legaspi City, Albay in the Philippines; 4. That I, Dioscoro C. Bobiles as the husband and father, am giving my lawful consent to this adoption of said minor child, JASON CONDAT; 5. That further, my wife ZENAIDA O. CORTEZA BOBILES, and I have continuously reared and cared for this minor child, JASON CONDAT since birth;

6. That as a result thereof, my wife and I have developed a kind of maternal and paternal love for the boy as our very own, exercising therein the care, concern and diligence of a good father toward him; 7. That I am executing this document, an AFFIDAVIT OF CONSENT for whatever it is worth in the premises as to the matter of adoption of this minor child, JASON CONDAT, by my wife ZENAIDA O. CORTEZA BOBILES and by me,

mutually desire to adopt as our child, a boy named

JASON CONDAT, still a minor being six (6) years old, likewise residing at 18 C. Imperial Street, Legaspi City, Albay, also in the Philippines;

any court of justice; (Emphasis supplied.) xxx xxx xxx

The foregoing declarations, and his subsequent confirmatory testimony in open court, are sufficient to make him a co-petitioner. Under the circumstances then obtaining, and by reason of his foreign residence, he must have yielded to the legal advice that an affidavit of consent on his part sufficed to make him a party to the petition. This is evident from the text of his affidavit. Punctiliousness in language and pedantry in the formal requirements should yield to and be eschewed in the higher considerations of substantial justice. The future of an innocent child must not be compromised by arbitrary insistence of rigid adherence to procedural rules on the form of pleadings. We see no reason why the following doctrines in American law should not apply to this case and, for that matter, in our jurisdiction. It is a settled rule therein that adoption statutes, as well as matters

of procedure leading up to adoption, should be liberally construed to carry out the beneficent purposes of the adoption institution and to protect the adopted child in the rights and privileges coming to it as a result of the adoption.

consummated years before, but rather to approach the case with the inclination to uphold such acts if it is found that there was a substantial compliance with the statute.

The technical rules of pleading


should not be stringently applied to adoption proceedings, and it is deemed more important that the petition should contain facts relating to the child and its parents, which may give information to those interested, than that it should be formally correct as a pleading. Accordingly, it is generally held that a petition will confer jurisdiction if it substantially complies with the adoption statute, alleging all facts necessary to give the court jurisdiction.

modern tendency of the courts is to hold that there need not be more than a substantial compliance with statutory requirements to sustain the validity of the proceeding; to refuse would be to indulge in such a narrow and technical construction of the statute as to defeat its intention and beneficial results or to invalidate proceedings where every material requirement of the statute was complied with. In support of this rule it is said that it is not the duty of the courts to bring the judicial microscope to bear upon the case in order that every slight defect may be enlarged and magnified so that a reason may be found for declaring invalid an act

In determining whether or not to set aside the decree of adoption the interests and welfare of the child are of primary and paramount consideration.


welfare of a child is of paramount consideration in proceedings involving its

custody and the propriety of its adoption by another, and the courts to which the application for adoption is made is charged with the duty of protecting the child and its interests and, to bring those interests fully before it, it has authority to make rules to accomplish that end.

Social Welfare and Development unqualifiedly recommended the approval of the petition for adoption

Tamargo vs. CA G.R. No. 85044 June 3, 1992 Justice FELICIANO FACTS: On 20 October 1982, Adelberto Bundoc, then a minor of 10 years of age, shot Jennifer Tamargo with an air rifle causing injuries which resulted in her death. Accordingly, a civil complaint for damages was filed with the Regional Trial Court, Branch 20, Vigan, Ilocos Sur, docketed as Civil Case No. 3457-V, by petitioner Macario Tamargo, Jennifer's adopting parent, and petitioner spouses Celso and Aurelia Tamargo, Jennifer's natural parents against respondent spouses Victor and Clara Bundoc, Adelberto's natural parents with whom he was living at the time of the tragic incident. In addition to this case for damages, a criminal information or Homicide through Reckless Imprudence was filed [Criminal Case No. 1722-V] against Adelberto Bundoc. Adelberto,

and the

trial court dispensed with the trial custody for several commendatory reasons, especially since the child had been living with the adopting parents since infancy. Further, the said petition was with the sworn written consent of the children of the adopters. The trial court and respondent court acted correctly in granting the petition for adoption and we find no reason to disturb the same. As found and aptly stated by respondent court: "Given the facts and circumstances of the case and considered in the light of the foregoing doctrine,
28 27

Ordinarily, the approval of the adoption rests in the sound discretion of the court. This discretion should be exercised in accordance with the best interests of the child, as long as the natural rights of the parents over the child are not disregarded. In the absence of a showing of grave abuse, the exercise of this discretion by the approving official will not be disturbed.

In the case at bar, the rights concomitant to and conferred by the decree of adoption will be for the best interests of the child. His adoption is with the consent of his natural parents.

We are of the opinion and so

hold that the decree of adoption issued by the court a quo would go a long way towards promoting the welfare of the child and the enhancement of his opportunities for a useful and happy life."


representative of the Department of

however, was acquitted and exempted from criminal liability on the ground that he bad acted without discernment. Prior to the incident, or on 10 December 1981, the spouses Sabas and Felisa Rapisura had filed a petition to adopt the minor Adelberto Bundoc in Special Proceedings No. 0373-T before the then Court of First Instance of Ilocos Sur. This petition for adoption was grunted on, 18 November 1982, that is, after Adelberto had shot and killed Jennifer. ISSUE: Should the adopting parents be held liable?

58 of the Child and Youth Welfare Code, re-enacted this rule: Article 58 Torts Parents and guardians are responsible for the damage caused by the child under their parental authority in

living in their company and

under their parental authority subject to the appropriate defenses provided by law. (Emphasis supplied) We do not believe that parental authority is properly regarded as having been retroactively transferred to and vested in the adopting parents, the Rapisura spouses, at the time the air rifle shooting happened. We do not consider that retroactive effect may be giver to the decree of adoption so as to impose a liability upon the adopting parents accruing at a time when adopting parents

accordance with the civil Code. (Emphasis supplied)

Article 221 of the Family Code of the Philippines

has similarly insisted upon

the requisite that the child, doer of the tortious act, shall have beer in the actual custody of the parents sought to be held liable for the ensuing damage:

HELD: As earlier noted, under the Civil Code, the basis of parental liability for the torts of a minor child is the relationship existing between the parents and the minor child living with them and over whom, the law presumes, the parents exercise supervision and control. Article

Art. 221. Parents and other persons exercising parental authority shall be civilly liable for the injuries and damages caused by the acts or omissions of their unemancipated children

had no actual or physically custody over the adopted child. Retroactive affect may
perhaps be given to the granting of the petition for adoption where such is essential to permit the accrual of some benefit or advantage in favor of the adopted child. In the instant case,

however, to hold that parental authority had been retroactively lodged in the Rapisura spouses so as to burden them with liability for a tortious act that they could not have foreseen and which they could not have prevented (since they were at the time in the United States and had no physical custody over the child Adelberto) would be unfair and unconscionable. Such a result, moreover, would be inconsistent with the philosophical and policy basis underlying the doctrine of vicarious liability. Put a little differently, no presumption of parental dereliction on the part of the adopting parents, the Rapisura spouses, could have arisen since Adelberto was not in fact subject to their control at the time the tort was committed. Under the above Article 35, parental authority is provisionally vested in the adopting parents during the period of trial custody, i.e., before the issuance of a

decree of adoption, precisely because the

adopting parents are given actual custody of the child during such trial period. In
the instant case, the trial custody period either had not yet begun or bad already been completed at the time of the air rifle shooting; in any case, actual custody of Adelberto was then with his natural parents, not the adopting parents. Accordingly, we conclude that respondent Bundoc spouses, Adelberto's natural parents, were indispensable parties to the suit for damages brought by petitioners, and that the dismissal by the trial court of petitioners' complaint, the indispensable parties being already before the court, constituted grave abuse of discretion amounting to lack or excess of jurisdiction.